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How much money are we willing to spend on health services?



How much money are we willing to spend on health services?



Tidsskrift for den Norske Laegeforening 120(7): 779-782



Like most other countries, Norway spends increasing sums of money on health care. The purpose of this study is to elicit people's views on whether society should spend more, and if so, their willingness to contribute to the financing of an expanded health service. A random sample of the Norwegian population (2,089) were approached regarding a questionnaire study. 716 returned completed questionnaires (34%). Different versions of a questionnaire were used on three sub-samples in order to analyze the extent to which the distribution of answers depends on the wording of the questions. Variation in answers are sought explained by sociodemographic variables and political preferences. 70-80% held that society should spend more on health care. Their willingness to pay more in terms of "earmarked health care taxes" varied between the sub-samples. The mean annual figures were between NOK 1,314 and NOK 1,972. The proportions not willing to pay more varied between 39% and 46%. It appears to be wide support for the idea that society should spend more on health care, but limited support for the idea of having to finance the desired expansion. One should be very cautious to generalize from preference surveys of this kind, because answers depend on the wording of the questions.

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Accession: 046280241

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